THIS DATA IS AVAILABLE THROUGH THE COURTESY OF MARY LOU McHAFFIE
MacHaffie, the last name found in Galloway, said to be one of many
forms derived from
MacDhubshith, Mac-a-Phi, McDuffie, M'Haffie, MacFie, etc.
In 1991, I learned that Dr. George F. Black in Surnames of
Scotland, p. 461, shows listing:
MACCAFFIE, MACHAFFIE. The fuller form of this name is given in a
list of Wigtown
men (Wodrow, Analecta, IV, p. 22) as Mackilhaffy. This represents
Mac Gille Chathbhaidh,
`son of the servant of S. Cathbad.' The name is also preserved in
the place name Craig Caffie,
parish of Inch, which appears in a charter of the time of Robert I
as Kellechaffe or Kellechaffy
(RMS., I, App. II, 616). John McCaffe was king's messenger in
1540 (ALHT., VII, p. 440).
The name is confined mainly to the Stewartry, and M'Hivey of 1578
(M'Kerlie, I, p. 239) is
probably an old spelling of the name. McChaffie 1689. The
following forms are all recorded
in 1684 (Parish): McHaffine, McIlhaffie, Mahaffie, Mahalfie,
Milhaffie. In Stranraer 1940.
ALHT refers to the Annals of the Lord High Treasurer. My research shows
that Andrew McChaffie, 1689,
is same as Andrew McHaffie in Miltown, Kirkcudbright, who turns up in 1689
PC records most of the time as
McHaffie. The temporary ministers in the area list McHaffies with several
variants, but the Register of the
Privy Council pages show McHaffie.
Dr. Black also gives another listing which I had learned about
earlier, which differs from statements
made in the foregoing:
MacFee, MacFie, MacPhee, MacPhie. G. MacDhubhshith, one of the
oldest and most
interesting Gaelic personal names we possess. "Its plan and
concept," says Dr. Gillies, "go far
away beyond those of even our old names" (Place-names of
Argyllshire, p. 82). Johannes
Macdufthi appears as charter witness in Dumfriesshire in the reign
of Alexander II (Melros,
p. 182), and a Thomas Macdoffy rendered homage, 1296 (Bain, II, p.
169). The AFM. record
Dubside (mod. G. Dubhsidhe) as ferleiginn or reader of Iona in
1164, and Skene suggests (CS.,
III, p. 363) that the clan may have derived its name from him.
The island of Colonsay appears
to have been the home of the clan, but later a number of the name
were located in Lochaber,
and were followers of Cameron of Locheil. Archibald McKofee was a
tenant in Islay in 1506
and Malcolm Makcofee tenant in Colonsay in same year (ER., XII, p.
709). Morphe mcphe
de Colwinsay was cited for treason in 1531 (APS., II, p. 333a),
and Dusey [=Dubhsith] McFee
was tenant of Bar in Islay, 1541 (ER., XVII, p. 616). Ewin
McAphie alias Vic Condachie was
one of those ordered to appear either before the Privy Council or
before the sheriff and give
bond in 1681 (RPC., 3. ser. VII, p. 82), and a notorious
freebooter named Macphee about
1845-50 gave name to Eilean Mhic Phee in Loch Quoich, where he
established himself with
his family recognizing no law and no landowner. There is an
account of him, with portrait, in
Ellice's Place-names in Glengarry and Glenquoich. John M'Affie
appears in Meikle Kildy,
parish of Dron, 1747 (Dunblane). The name means `Black (one) of
peace,' from dubh and sith
(OIr. dub + sith), and parallel names are Cusithe, `hound of
peace,' and Fearsithe, `man of
peace.' A family in North Uist is (or was) known as `Dubh-sidh,'
`Black fairy,' from a tradition
that the family have been familiar with the fairies in their fairy
flights and secret migrations
(CG., 2. ed., II, p. 354). M'affeith ca 1512, McAffie 1595,
M'aphie 1723, M'duffe 1532,
Mcduffie 1626, McDuphie 1703, Makfeith 1605, McFeye 1585, Mc iphie
1609. MacHaffie is
another current form of the name. McAchopich 1569.
MACDUFFIE. G. MacDuibhshithe, `son of Dubhshithe' (the black man
of peace), the name
of an old Colonsay family. See MACFEE. The lands of Glenscharway
in Arane were leased
to Neil M'Duffy, 1460 (ER., VII, p. 13). Sir Malcolm Macduffy,
vicar of Kilmarew (i.e.
Killarow in Islay) died 1554 (OPS., II, p. 261). In 1592 the king
confirmed a charter of
feudifirme by Malcolm M'Duphe, commendator of Ormesay, with
consent of the brethren to
Archibald Campbell M'Duthie Vekdonill and his heirs masculine of
certain lands in the
lordship of Knapdale (RMS., V, 2166).
George Fraser Black had a Ph.D., was on the staff of the New York
City Public Library, and his 900
page book Surnames of Scotland: Their Origin, Meaning & History is highly
regarded and contains 8,000 last
names. [I don't have codes for abbreviations.] Black also lists Duthac,
saying it is Scotticized form of G.
Dubhthach, that Old Irish name is Dubthach....Duffy, O'Duffy,...rendered
Duhig in county Cork, and Dooey,
Dowey,...Duhy....earlier Dubhthoch. He mentions an ogham inscription at
Lamogue,...Dovatuc-eas. In Old
Norse spelled Dufthakr. Dubhthach was arch poet of King Laeghaire,
converted by S. Patrick. Dubhthach....of
Columcille, died 7 October 938. He says Duthacus and Duthac are found as
forenames in 15th c.
Under Duthie, Black says the name may commemorate S. Dubhthach of
Tain, and mentions some in
Dunblane, Orkney, Insches. Black says Maccathy is an old Galloway name,
1481, and is found in Rothesay,
Robert Bain and clan maps tie McHaffies of Galloway to the
MacDuffie-MacFies, a very ancient clan.
In The Highland Clans, Sir Iain Moncrieffe of That Ilk, pp. 79-80,
quotes Dr. Black:
McFie, one of oldest and most interesting Gaelic names. Black
derives Macfie through
Macduffy from MacDhuibhshith, a name meaning `black (one) of
peace.' Black also says, may
be related to sacred clan who became the Mackinnons. The Church
on Colonsay is dedicated
to St. Columba, to whose kin the Mackinnons probably belonged.
Sir Iain Moncrieffe's map, Scotland of Old, lists Machaffie and
indicates the MacFie tartan to be worn.
Moncrieffe states in his book, The Highland Clans, that he was abroad at
the time the editing of the clan names
list for Scotland of Old was done, saying that the task fell to his
editors. Moncrieffe was the Albany Herald,
court of Lord Lyon of Arms. Frank Adam, scholar, also supports this tie in
his book The Clans, Septs and
Regiments of the Scottish Highlands. The late Sir Thomas Innes of Learney,
Emeritus Lord Lyon of Arms,
revised Adam's book and concurred.
Also quoted in The Highland Clans is Dr. Cameron Gillies, who
says, `Its plan and concept go far away
beyond those of even our old names,' in Place-names of Argyllshire, p. 82,
referring to the name McDhuibhshith.
From An Etymological Dictionary of the Gaelic Language by
Alexander MacBain, LL.D., repr. 1982,
p. 409: MAC-PHEE, G[aelic] M'a-Phi, M[iddle] G[aelic] M'a ffeith (Dean of
Lismore's book), M'Duibsithi
(1467), documents Macduffie (1463), for Dub-shithe, Black of peace (dubh
and sith). [The space between
letters or the hyphen indicates that something has been left out.]
MacFie was once the only spelling the Lord Lyon King of Arms
recognized, although some MacHaffie
prob. had registered arms by 1600s and onward.
I have read that dhubh, black, means black-haired when applied to
a man and is pronounced du. The
tradition of having a dark-haired man be the first person to step over the
threshhold on New Year's Day is
linked to the Dark Man of Peace, Dubhshith.
MacFies claim descent from Alpin, (k. 836 A.D., King of the Scots)
whose son Kenneth I, crowned 843
A.D., at Scone was first to rule over kingdoms of both the Picts and Scots
(Scotti from IRE). Alpin's symbol
was the boar's head, couped, in memory of his slain father. Author S.
Baring-Gould states: "the clan Alpine
consisted of seven subclans: the MacGregors, Grants, MacIntosh, MacNab,
MacPhies, MacGarries, and
Ian Grimble, another authority, states that "the most aboriginal
stock, a remnant in remote places....
looked upon as a fairy folk." The original inhabitants seem always to be
dark and of smaller stature than those
who come in to conquer and press them into outlying areas.
The original inhabitants of Britain were dark haired, of medium
height, and round headed, and the Celts
were taller, long headed and often red-haired or blond.
I try to preserve each different spelling of Scottish names. I
could not have found the banished Scot,
John McHaffie, or my forebears if each had not spelled and pronounced the
name in this fashion and taught
his offspring to do the same. Since my Daddy had told me this is the way
our family pronounced and spelled
it, I had to hope to find the banished man spelling it McHaffie, and sure
enough, McHaffie and M'Haffie is how
it is recorded in the Privy Council Register in 1684 Scotland, and McHaffie
is how historian David Dobson of
Scotland lists the name in The Original Scots Colonists and in Directory of
Scots Banished. Mr Jas Chrystie,
minister of Kirkcowan parish, Wigtownshire, on 8 Oct 1684 in preparing list
of those in his parish lists John
Mahaffie in Gargerie, and other family groups in area are listed as Mahaffie.
M' indicates abbreviation for Mack in Scotland. In Gaelic, the
accent is almost always on the first
syllable (not usually on the `Mac' however). Mack HAF'fie is how my branch
pronounces our name.
The Ogham alphabet chart shows 20 characters and markings used on
corner edge of tombstones in
5th to 8th c., and mac, maqq were used. Stones in Killarney IRE and in
n.e. Scotland (the Brandsbutt Stone
also has Pictish inscribed serpent and symbols as well as the Ogham
inscription). Nora Chadwick in the
Introduction of H. M. Chadwick's book, Early Scotland, the Picts and the
Scots and the Welsh of Southern
Scotland, publ. by Cambridge at the University Press, 1949, states that the
Picts did have written language. See
my listing, Craigcaffie Broch.
I have read that the middens, or refuse pits, on Colonsay indicate
that Pictish Celts lived there long ago.
Inghean, ingen, ini, nighean and ne all mean a daughter in Gaelic.
In 1566 in McLeod Charter appears
a woman's name shown Ne Vc Kenze. These Gaelic words all relate to a Greek
root word þþþþþþ for a
grand- daughter. Ogam inigena; eni-gena, per Alexander MacBain, An
Etymylogical Dictionary of the Gaelic
Language, 1896, repr. 1982, Gairm Publ., 29 Waterloo St., Glasgow. In
Irish, o' challum means something like
of the children of, I suppose. Mhic means grandchild, I think. Vic means
of, or, of that name, I think. Clann
means children,...Irish, Old Irish cland, Welsh plant. MacBain then gives
more words meaning company, family,
The MacDuffee/MacFie Clan Society of America was org. Jul 1962 and
membership is made up of
those with ties to MacDuffee, MacFie, MacAfee, MacPhee, MacGuffey,
MacHaffie, Duffee, Fee and other
variants. Clan Chatter, the newsletter, is published regularly and
includes several pages of material on new
members' profiles and their ancestral lines. Write to: Joyce McDuffie
Dennis, Secretary/Registrar, 164 Annex
Drive, S.E., Milledgeville, GA 31061-4864, e-mail: [email protected]
Members of the society may
contact individuals who are compiling information on name variants:
McAfee, McDuffie, McDuffee, Duffie,
Guffey and McGuffey, Mahaffey, Haffey, McHaffie, etc. Fritz McDuffie, Oak
Ridge, TN, is President of the
Society, as well as the Genealogy Chairman. Web pages are on the Internet.
MacFie Clan Society of North America, 7501 Hickory Ridge Rd., Mt.
Juliet TN 37122, invites
membership and publishes Newsbeat. Also, I once read that the Keeper of
Records is Miss Keerie MacPhee,
Dal na Traigh, Aird's Bay, Taynuilt, Argyllshire, Scotland, PA35 1JQ 08662
McGuffeys are also invited to join Douglas society.
Matheson's Surnames in Ireland shows M'Haffy=M'Fee, M'Affie,
M'Affee, MacFie, M'Afee; but none
listed in Bell's The Book of Ulster I am told.